tv Face the Nation CBS September 7, 2014 8:30am-9:01am PDT
bob i'm bob schieffer on "face the nation," new american airstrikes in iraq overnight as president ponders a new strategy to combat the isis terror. >> our goal is to act with urgency but also to make sure that we're doing it right. and we're going to achieve our goal. we are going to degrade and ultimately defeat isis. >> schieffer: what exactly is the next step with congress back in session this week demand for a strategy and action will grow. we'll hear from florida republican senator marco rubio and top democrat on house intelligence committee dutch ruppersberger. former secretary of state henry kissinger has his own idea how to deal with isis. we'll have analysis on that and more with peg knee noonan of the
"wall street journal." david ignatious. "washington post" and peter baker of the "new york times." plus new results from our cbs news "new york times" battleground tracker on how the 2014 election is shaping up. 60 years of news because this is "face the nation." captioning sponsored by cbs good morning, again. the united states has expanded its assault against the terror group isis in iraq overnight launching new airstrikes in the area around the hadetha dam. last month u.s. airstrikes exceeded in pushing isis back from the mosul dam area both are considered key assets in the region. secretary of defense hagel made the announcement while traveling today overseas. >> i think the strikes that united states took are very much in line with what president
obama said were the guiding principles of military action in iraq. >> we begin this morning with florida senator marco rubio who sits on both the intelligence and foreign relations committee. he joins us from miami this morning and senator, the president said on nbc this morning that he is going to make a speech wednesday to the american people and outline to them the strategy, he says the next phase as he put it is going to be going on the offensive against isil, his quote, this is not going to be an announcement on u.s. ground troops but similar to the kind of counter terrorism campaigns we have carried out in the past. so i guess my question to you is, what do you want to hear from the president? >> i want to hear what she have said months ago, weeks ago. that is first clearly explain to the american people what our national security interests are in the region especially what is happening in syria and iraq,
accurately describe to the american people the risk that isil poses. this is a group that made very clear they want to establish an islamic group in the middle east and drive us from the region. the way they're going to drive us from the region through terrorists acts ip cluing here in the homeland describe us to the unique capabilities this group has which includes a ton of funds, weapons, but also foreign fighters including foreign fighters with passports that allow them easy access to the united states. second, needs to clearly outline what here going to do, i hope that includes sustained air campaign, targeting the supply lines, their command and control structures i hope that will include their central command and control structures within sear why and hope announcing that he's going to target the refineries that they now control in syria. revenues which they're using to fund their tricks. >> you are ready for him to order airstrikes in to syria? >> absolutely. i think it's critical that we do
that. serious about defeating isil you have to go after where they're head quartered. what is important to understand that they are generating revenue in syria, with former assad refine lease that they now control and their generating revenues. but all of their supplies, command and control are being operated from there. you cannot defeat isil unless you hit them in those parts where syrian government not present. >> this is a bit of a change for you, is it not, you are a little reluctant going in to syria if i recall? >> if you recall, at that time what the president charactered as sim balance lick military action against assad government. the best way to topple assad was to arm, quip, train, capacitate moderate rebel elements within syria. that was a better approach. this is targeting isil a group that imposes immediate danger to the united states if we are serious about defeating them we
must strike them in syria and iraq. previous debate was what to do with assad, the best way to topple assad was not through airstrikes but through quip equipping moderate rebel elements. >> do you have some new intelligence information here because if i understood the president correctly this morning, he was not sure that they pose a threat now to the u.s. homeland but they could g.o.p. such a threat to you do you think they pose a threat to the homeland now? >> i believe they d. i'll tell you why. first and foremost because they are replete with both european and american fighters and more europeans that have passports that allow them immediate access to the united states. second because i think it's important not to over estimate the amount of intelligence that we have on these groups and about these groups they have learned a lot about our intelligence gathering capabilities through series of disclosures and other sorts of things they have become increasingly capable of evading detection. to sit back say we don't think they pose a threat because we
haven't seen one would be short sighted. fact. matter is this group has among their ranks hundreds if not thousands of people with capability of entering the united states quickly and easily and we should not take that lightly. >> you know, senator as president went through this evolving explanation of our strategy famously said last week we didn't really have a strategy. then he seemed to be kind of inching along here until he now says we have to really ramp it up and go after them. do you think that he should have shown more of a sense of urgency? he has been saying we have to do this very deliberately but do you think she have shown more urgency in reacting to this? >> i'm going to say something i don't say lightly. i know there is always differences between republicans and democrats i try to certainly not allow that to filter in to foreign policy, something that i hope will continue to be bipartisan i believe this
president has committed presidential malpractice in foreign policy. exhibit a is what he's done with the middle east. he ran for office under the notion that our national interests in the middle east were to disengage as quickly as possible and disentangle from the region that has been chaotic, led toe series of policy pronouncements and words that he is saying whether isil was the jv, setting red lines that weren't in force all those things ha of been counter productive i think created some generational and reputational damage to the united states of great significance. this continues this week you have mixed messages coming from the administration, they don't have a strategy, are we going to contain them more defeat them, the vice president says we're going to fall to the gates of hell the president is saying that we're going to simply contain them. these -- our allies are watching this as well, they're concluding that the american foreign policy is in the hands of someone who does not know what he's doing. >> schieffer: do you see also this changing, outlook of those
in your cincinnati we had rand paul who seemed very reluctant about his response but then last week he said if i had been president obama's shoes i would have acted more decisively and strongly. would have called congress back to session even during recess, we should have asked for authorization for hill terry action, he would know no have received it. you also have ted cruz this morning saying, he should have reacted strongly and hit them hard in the very beginning. are republicans also kind of changing their outlook over this past week or so pgh (by mr. 123 ) i hope so. reality in the real world ooms has way of doing that my biggest problem with this motion that we should disengage has never worked. in fact deeply counter productive. at the root that have argument by the way is the believe that all these problems are created because of american engagement. since my earliest days in the senate and certainly with regards to isil for weeks now hive been arguing if we don't
deal with them now have to deal with them later anyways it's going to be harder to deal with them fact that there are more voices echoing that, i think it's a positive development and certainly example of how reality has set in when it becomes to foreign policy and our national security. >> let me ask you a little with it about the president's statements over the week on immigration. he was planning on taking executive action on immigration reform because he said congress wouldn't do anything. then we were told yesterday that the president has decided in fact he will put off any executive action until after the election. white house aides who were briefing reporters made no bones about it they said they were doing this because democrats, some of them in very tight senate races, democratic candidates felt it was going to hurt their chances for re-election. the president says, it's not politics that is behind it but what do you -- what do you make of all this?
>> it's definitely politics. let me say this. i think that we have to deal with immigration. we have a broken enforcement system on immigration. we have legal immigration system that outdated and needs to be modernized to win the global competition for talent we have millions of people living in this country illegal lehman owe have been here for a decade or longer we need to find responsible 'of incorporating them. last year we tried to do that through one size fits all comprehensive approach, it didn't work. we don't have the support for that. the only way we're going to be able to address it i believe she through sequence of bills that begins by proving to people that illegal immigration is under control, modernizing our system then dealing with those who are here illegally. if the president takes executive action he will make achieving that which won't be easy even harder. i'm disappointing he intends to do it anyway because what he's basically saying he doesn't want to be held accountable by the electorate for an action that is
unpopular because the american people don't want to do anything on immigration until they know that the border and illegal immigration system is secure. illegal immigration problem is under control. >> schieffer: i'll close with this question. you've been thinking obviously about whether to run for the republican nomination in 2016, are you anywhere close to making a decision on that? >> well, you know, i have to make decision in 2016 either way because i'm up for re-election in the senate for me not about the position where can i best advocate for 21st century reform 'general that allows us to usher in another american century. decision, can i best do that as senator or can i best do that as running and hopefully winning the presidency. that is a question i'll have more clarity on because i am promise you this, one place been i will not be able to do that from is a senate that is still run by harry reid that allows no votes on anything of substance or importance. >> schieffer: senator marco rubio, thank you so much. >> thank you. >> schieffer: joining us now for a different perspective pop
democrat on house intelligence committee maryland congressman dutch ruppersberger. marco rubio says president is guilty of presidential malpractice, how would you put it? >> absolutely not. let's talk about where we are. we have very serious threat with isis there's no question. we are the most powerful country in the world and when we have a threat we're going to take action. now what people don't realize is that people that i work with, and people intelligence, armed services committee we deal with the military and intelligence committee every day they are the strongest in the world. they are there advising the president and giving the president exactly what we need to do to protect americans and to stop this threat. now, i think the president mated a mistake when did he not come out as strong after we had an american's head cut off, not one, but two. at that point we should have, i believe he should have stood up very strongly said, we're not going to take it, we're going to come after you and bring to you
justice. and i think the president realized he had to be stronger. the vice president who came out and said, we're going to follow you to the gates of hell, that is what we needed to hear. we are doing that. as a result of that, the president and secretary of state and secretary of defense have organized bringing other countries involved because we in the united states we're the most powerful and people look to us for leadership, however we also can't be sheriff for the whole world, we have other issues we're dealing with, too. if in fact now that they know that we mean business, we have to of ha a strategy to take out isis and we're doing it right now. >> schieffer: well, so he's going to make a speech wednesday to the american people, what do you want to hear from him? >> what i want to hear to 'assure the american public and world that we're standing up, we're going to have strategy and we're not going to rest until we bring these people to justice and we stamp them out because there are threat to the united states, to americans to our allies to the world. but on the other hand it's easy
for sound byte to say we need to go in bomb syria, if isis is there. we need to do what we need to do to take in the them out. we have to make sure that we have the intelligence, best defense against defense, i believe that if we're going to take isis out you need to take out their leadership. want to kill a snake, you cut its head off. i believe that is what we have to do find out where their leadership is going after them. >> schieffer: you heard marco rubio saying we need to go after the oil refineries in syria, we need to go after these assets, these places that they're going to get revenue, are you willing to go that far? >> i'm willing to do what would need to do i don't want to tell isis what we're going to do before we do it. i think that is what concerns me to just say go in bomb them. we need to get results. like we have done in iraq and -- i mean in afghanistan and in pakistan. we have gob in very effectively took out leadership in that area. the problem that terrorism and
al qaeda have grown a lot, it wilt be threat for years to come. that's why we need fob strong from intelligence perspective. and get the information and do what we need to do to protect americans. really, our number one priority to protect americans and homeland then to protect americans throughout the world. my opinion right now americans anywhere in the world are really at risk because of what's happening -- >> schieffer: you're with marco rubio that isis poses a threat to the homeland now? >> well, i'm dutch ruppersberger i'm going to say what i think. the thing that concerns me about the homeland more than anything sells the issue of americans having passports, who have gone to syria laugh become radicalized then they have ability to get back in the united states or great britain or canada. give you an example, you had individual, an american who went to serious radicalized was trained as suicide bomber came home toe see his parents then went back to syria blew himself up and killed other people we didn't pick up the visit to his
parents. that individual was trained could have tea tacked the united states. that's a concern to me. brett let me say this from american point of view. as of today we don't have intelligence that says, that there's going to be an attack tomorrow. now that can change the next day. and that's why we're so vigilant. that's why what happened with snowden and these situations, we need to make sure we get the intelligence -- >> schieffer: let me ask you this. can you under any circumstances envision the united states sending ground combat troops back in? >> absolutely not. that's not where we need to be. we have intelligence per speck from ability to use our resources take out groups like isis. it's got to be well planned get information. we don't need boots on the ground any more. we don't need tanks going in or infantry in there that's not what we're dealing with. not taking over another country. not going to do. that the american public does not want that either. >> schieffer: all right. congressman, thank you so much. hope to see you again. 57 years ago harvard professor
henry kissinger came on "face the nation" to talk about new book, well he has another new one "world order. it's his 17th when we ask him about the threat from isis when he stopped by earlier he said we should have already hit them hard. so you're talking about a massive response not hitting one target but as many as possible. >> an american is murdered on television for the purpose of terrorizing americans, there should be a response that you cannot -- you would not analyze in terms of a normal response to provocation. so something has to crystallize out of this violence and it won't happen without our leadership. we cannot do it all by ourselves. but we can make clear that certain tactics will be strongly
resistant. >> schieffer: i want to ask you about russia. has the obama administration talked to you or sought your advice on russia? because to my way of thinking, nobody probably knows putin as well as you do. >> it depends how you define the obama administration. until very recently i have had no conversation even with security advisor. on that subject. i have had access to the secretary of state, it's my basic philosophy is that i don't volunteer advice. i've been in that position. and i know what it's like but i try to respond to questions when they're put to me. >> schieffer: let me ask you a question. what should our message be to russia and to mr. putin right now and what should our strategy
be. >> professor:. >> the situation has come very far and using military presence which we cannot accept. there for it is appropriate for us to insist that the military pressures -- bob the problem he says is to convince putin it is bet are for both sides if ukraine becomes a bridge between them rather than an outpost of either. >> we need an outcome that does not make the west appear weak. and an outcome that does not make it appear humiliated. can one find a passage between it. we cannot permit a country to be -- but we should do it in a manner that keeps open the
possibility that russia joins international system rather than it is put in a position where it feels totally outkast. >> rightly or wrongly there seems to be a perception in various parts of the world that the united states is somehow withdrawing, do you feel that, do you hear that? >> the fundamental statement of the administration have emphasized more what we should not do than what we can achieve. they have implied withdrawal of america from certain regions is actually beneficial to these regions. i think in the countries that i know and that very many of them,
it's that the united states is restoring, not so much about american presence is about american actions. >> schieffer: for the partisan divide in washington on foreign policy, kissinger beliefs america must always remain involved. must always play a role. >> i would any way prefer it if both parties had comparable policy in that respect and disagreed mostly on tactics. we shouldn't tell the american people that there's -- two absolute solutions. could say historic process in which every part of the world is changing simultaneously but it cannot change creatively without a major american contribution. >> schieffer: his book goes on sale around the world this week. we'll be back in one minute.
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it's one more part of our commitment to america. >> schieffer: this week we mark the 13th anniversary of the one of the worst days in american history the day we have come to know by two numbers, 9/11. memories of that day may have faded for some for those of us who were in the northeast that day it will never be forgotten. all of us, my family was among the lucky my brother was in the pentagon the day before the attack in the very room where the plane hit. we lost contact for four hours with my younger daughter in new york. but she was eventually found safe. i knew 11 people who died or lost close relatives that day including a young colleague at cbs news who lost her dad. so forgive me if i feel a certain urgency about the
current terror threat, forgive me but i've been through this before. no, i can't forget the bad but i can also remember the good. how an awful day brought americans together as they have not come together since world war ii. how road rage disappears the next day as people waved and honked. we had all gone through it together. most of all i remember the heroic firefighters and police officers putting their lives at risk to save the innocent. and congress putting aside partisanship at least for a little while and singing "god bless america" at night on the capital steps. ♪ my home sweet home >> schieffer: in the end it brought out the best in us which hadn't happened in awhile but it was hard way to do it and we owe it to each other never to let such a thing happen again. forgive me, but i've been through this before. for you, success is a starting gate,
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